There are many ways to identify a false prophet. The bible says that they deny that Jesus is the Christ, they don’t believe that Jesus is the son of God and that he came in the flesh. Those that deny that Jesus is the Christ is also referred to as the anti- Christ. This can be found in (1 John 2:18, 22). This message is more focused on discerning if someone is of God or Not and it gives a biblical outline on identifying a false prophet, teacher, messenger, spiritual leader etc… My message also addresses ways to know if you are in the right ministry.
What is a False Prophet? A false prophet is someone who is not a genuine messenger of God they deceive and mislead God’s people. They use tactics like fear, control, manipulation, false doctrine and their fruits do not align up with the character of God and their teachings don’t align up with word of God.
1 John 4:1 Beloved believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.
Try means to test, evaluate, check out. Before a Christian decides to join a church or ministry they should sit back and observe what’s really going on, began to evaluate the leader and the ministry as a whole. God wants his children to be careful of who they are allowing to be shepherd over their soul. The bible says try the spirit see whether they are of God. Never join a church off of emotion.
Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
One of the most common ways to know if someone is of God is by their fruit (Matthew 7:16). Look at the persons conduct, character and habits. According to Galatians 5:22 the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance. True Prophets of God walk in the spirit and they are lead by the spirit of God. In a prophets life you should see the character of God manifested. Real Prophets don’t speak of themselves but only what God is speaking to them. Listen to what comes out of their mouth and how the communicate to people because the things that come out of the mouth come forth from the heart. There are many bible scholars who are very well educated but they don’t even know God. I would compare a false prophet to the Pharisees and the Sadducees because just like it says in Isaiah 29:13 they honor God with their lips but they’re hearts are far from him. True Prophets illustrate the heart of God towards his people. You can often count on False Prophets to be operating in the flesh by doing things such as talking badly about individuals by gossiping or spreading rumors. Watch and see if the Prophet or Spiritual Leader does any of the following: Do they always try to compete with someone else’s church or ministry? Do they care more about gaining members than getting souls saved and delivered? Do you notice a lot of spiritual abuse where members are being hurt verbally by the Pastor or Leader? A pastor and/or Shepherds job is not only feed the flock but to be the vessel that is going to help launch us into our destiny. It is not God’s will for us to stay in one place our whole life being stagnant but he wants us to be fruitful and use the gifts, talents and skills that he has invested in us to build the Kingdom. We are to be good stewards over what God had imparted into us.
Personal Gain False Prophets/ Bad Spiritual Leaders are all about personal gain. Their ministry is all about how they can profit financially. They care about popularity and getting people to like them. The bible calls them pleasers of men than of God. They are afraid to preach the whole truth; therefore they avoid sermons about holiness, righteousness, purity and sanctification. We live in a time where people don’t want the real truth “just make it sound good and give me a feel good message that’s going to make me shout.” Basically a false Prophet will not lead you to the cross. You’d be a believer but not saved. How do I know this because demons believe that Jesus is the Christ but they aren’t saved or neither are they going to heaven.
Genuine Prophets Abide In Love. 1 John 4:7 ….for God is Love and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God.
1 Corinthians 13: 4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails.
Carnality & False Doctrine Two important traits of a false Prophet is Carnality & False Doctrine
Carnal- relating to somebody’s physical needs or appetites, especially as contrasted with spiritual or intellectual qualities. Interested in everyday materialistic concerns than in the spiritual side of life.
1John 2:15-16 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
James 4:4 …..friendship of the world is enmity with God. 2Timony 4:3-4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
The Fear Factor They keep members by putting fear in them. For example, if a member decides they would like to leave the church and join some other ministry they’ll prophesy that something bad will happen to you if you leave. This is a spirit of control and is a form of witchcraft. When you try to control and manipulate someone you are now operating in the wrong spirit.
Another example, If you don’t agree with a specific teaching or doctrine they believe in, the enemy will use them and they’ll secretly and many times openly start speaking and praying ungodly words concerning you like death, sickness and lack. So basically they send out curses. Again this is witchcraft.
False Prophets know that FEAR stops FAITH. They have been assigned to hinder you and stunt your spiritual growth in God.
1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
True Prophet A True Prophetic word from a Prophet will come to pass
Deuteronomy 18:22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.
2 Chronicles 20:20 …Believe in the LORD your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper.
Testing a Prophetic Word.
• Draw You Closer To God • Voice of Peace • Sometimes Correction • Delivered In Love • Bear Witness In Your Spirit • God Will Confirm • Aligns With The Word of God • Accurate • Will give a prophecy whether you give a love offering or not. They prophesy in obedience to God
False Prophet Jeremiah 14:14 Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.
Jeremiah 23:16 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the LORD.
Testing a Prophetic Word
• Give false prophesy that bring confusion. • Contrary To The Word of God • Not on Point • They ask too many questions because they’re guessing. • A lot of the Prophecy will sound made up. • Give prophesy if you give a big offering.
Warning From God Jeremiah 23:1 Woe be unto the pastors that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith the LORD. 2 Therefore thus saith the LORD God of Israel against the pastors that feed my people; Ye have scattered my flock, and driven them away, and have not visited them: behold, I will visit upon you the evil of your doings, saith the LORD.